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Sunday, March 13, 2005
Anger Makes Me Mad
So this is for me from my pastor and my own personal notes, but hope it helps others too.
First off, God doesn’t usually work off of “sound bites” so if this is too long, then bookmark it and come back later, don’t think that it’s too long so it’s not important… unless, like I say, you NEVER get angry. Like a car cutting you off. Your wife not understanding you or you understanding her which causes anger. Your boss makes you feel like a moron... on and on.
Yes, anger is a part of life. How shall we handle it?
As 1 Cor. Says, “Love is patient, love is kind. Love is not provoked.”
Here are some myths about anger:
Myth #1: My anger is caused by external events and other people.
We all need to take into accountability our own anger. For we are judged by God not on what happens to us but by how we act, or react, to what happens to us. Think of the person you really dislike. “If it wasn’t for “this person” I would be a happy, smiling, loving, good-hearted person.” Do you really think this is true? Is one person that powerful that they hold you into anger and it’s all their fault? Say this with me, “I make me so mad!!!” Think how funny that sounds. Are we allowing another person to control our anger? Should we instead pray for them and love them? Take responsibility for your anger.
Myth #2: I can’t control my anger!
Jam 1:19 You must understand this, my dear brothers. Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.
Jam 1:20 For human anger does not produce God's righteousness.
Jam 1:21 Therefore, rid yourselves of everything impure and every expression of wickedness, and with a gentle spirit welcome the word planted in you that can save your souls.
A common story here is that one might be fighting with the spouse, then the phone rings, how do you answer? “Hello?” In the most sincere and loving tone one could have seconds after a tough conversation with your husband/wife/brother/sister.
Let us all be slow to anger for it is in us to be slow to anger but it takes the Holy Spirit… or a phone call, hehe, to realize how true that is.
Myth #3: I must vent my anger to get it out of me!
This doesn’t’ make sense, for I have known angry widows in nursing homes still angry at their dead husbands years after their deaths. Time does NOT heal wounds. God does. If “venting cures anger” then the converse would have to be true, for some people would be sooo full of joy that they would be a “joy volcano” or a gratitude “time bomb.” It just doesn’t’ make sense. It would have to work both ways… but it doesn’t’ which shows the fallacy of it all.
Anger does not drain from you but just the opposite. It builds up in you if you keep it in the inside of your heart where God wants and needs to be. In some cases, anger can make some people feel powerful like they are holding something against someone. Though where’s the power in that it’s YOU that feels the pain.
Myth #4: Tell someone else how angry you feel about that other person
This friend may feel compelled to try and help you and agree that this other person wronged you. You may even feel better… for a time. But it doesn’t change the fact that the anger is still there, just accepted in your circle of friends. Does that change your heart? Does that make it right with God?
3 STEPS TO HANDLE ANGER:
#1: Be slow to anger, to not react, but to act on what is in YOUR control. You cannot control others no matter how hard you try but you can control your actions. You are accountable to just your actions, NOT to others actions for or against you.
Pro 14:16 A wise man fears, and shuns evil, but the fool is hotheaded and reckless.
Pro 14:17 He who is quick to become angry will commit folly, and a crafty man is hated.
Pro 14:18 The simple inherit folly, but the prudent are crowned with knowledge.
Another word in the original text for “prudent” is cunning. Sounds like something I want God to want me to be. Smart, wise, cunning.
#2: Ask yourself, “Why am I angry?” Hurt, frustration, or fear are the main reasons that can be reasoned with in a calm way most of the time.
#3: The biggest reason of all to not hate those who hate you might come as a surprise.
Gal 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
I have died to myself. What RIGHT do I have to have anger towards another?? My rights are gone. His Rights Reign over me. Jesus loved us so much that he died on that cross so that anger, hate, bitterness, etc. would be things of the past to hold you down. Not that you won't feel it, but Jesus shows us the way to get past it.
Col 3:13 Put up with each other, and forgive anyone who does you wrong, just as Christ has forgiven you.
Is this easy, NO! Is it good for your health, oh yeah!
Though this study somewhat discounts stress in daily lives. I have worked in enough "end of life" situations to see personally and professionally that anger and stress, etc. can somehow cause, in some cases, death. It’s amazing. I have seen numerous times a couple married for 50 years and when one dies, the other will die soon after. Not to say it's due to anger necessarily, but our emotions and Spiritual lives affect our physical life.
Let it go, your enemies will still be there weather if you die from being angry about them or not! God loves you and will give you peace IF we ask and receive it.